The year 2020 has been a challenging year that no one saw coming. We are all going through something huge, dealing with it in whatever ways we can. Some of us have taken up jogging or bicycling. Others of us have taken up eating and sitting on our couches for days on end watching Netflix.
But if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that it’s so important to take care of ourselves- inside and out. There are so many things we can do to help keep our mental and physical health a priority.
There are 2 spaces in which we can divide up our self care routines: The mind and the body. Spoiler alert: doing self care for your mind will help your body and vice versa!
- Exercise- Moving your body will help with so many things- your weight, reduces your risk of heart disease and cancer, strengthens your muscles and bones, improves your sleep, and makes you feel better! Add a morning or evening walk into your busy life… your body will thank you!
- Diet- Eating things that are healthy for you and your body has many benefits, as we know. Healthy eating will help with your weight, reduces your cancer risk, helps with sleep, keeps your heart strong, and puts you in a better mood, just like exercising. But healthy eating also helps with your gut health. Make sure you eat well to take care of your body. A Vitamins- Part of keeping your body healthy is making sure it has the right and minerals to keep it performing at its best. Wellvites is a healthy alternative to regular vitamins that have a ton of sugar and additives. Wellvites has no added sugar, is vegan and gluten-free, and tastes great!
- Hydrate- Drinking lots of water is wonderful for your body. It helps with energy levels, elevates your mood, and keeps the brain functioning at a high level. Start carrying a water bottle with you everywhere you go.
- Sleep- Sleeping an adequate amount of sleep (at least 7-8 hours a night!) is a huge part of self care. Getting enough sleep can help your body by boosting your immune system, strengthening your heart, putting you in a better mood, and making you more productive. Try to get to bed at a decent time every night to ensure your body reaps the benefits sleep has to offer.
- Be in Nature- Spending time in nature reduces blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension and the production of stress hormones. Spend some time outside by yourself or with family and friends; it’s healthy!
- Take time for yourself- It’s easy to get caught up into doing things for everyone else. Parents have their kids to take care of, people have jobs, social lives. But, make sure you take time for yourself. Watch a TV show or paint. Do something that feeds your soul. Do something you like- What is it you like to do? Do you have a hobby or something you’ve always wanted to learn? Maybe you like to knit. Do something that makes you happy and that you enjoy. This will help you feel fulfilled.
- Meditate- Meditation is a habitual process of training your mind to focus and redirect your thoughts. There are many benefits from meditation, including: reducing stress, helping control anxiety, aids in emotional health, and enhancing self-awareness. It can take as little as 5 minutes a day, so everyone can find the time to squeeze in a meditation for your self care routine. And there are videos and apps if you need any guidance along the way.
- Read- Reading is a wonderful activity to add to any self care routine. Reading helps the mind in so many ways. It builds your vocabulary, reduces stress, aids sleep, and alleviates depression. It’s also enjoyable! Try to squeeze in some reading time before bed or when the kids take a nap.
- Be in nature- Now, I know I mentioned this before, but this one is so important! Studies show that being in nature or even viewing scenes of nature, reduces anger, anxiety, and stress. Going outside is a really easy thing to do, so no excuses on this one!
These ideas for self care may seem like a lot of work- at first. But once you get into a routine, and you start seeing and feeling the benefits, you will realize how valuable having a self care routine can really be. Taking care of yourself will also help those around you: your spouse, your kids, your family, your friends. You can’t pour from an empty cup! Be well!